How Great Sales and Marketing Can Level Up Your Accounting Business

November 17, 2022 Lydia Adams

Marketing agency preparing work for accounting firms clients

An accounting firm deals with the client's numbers only, right? So reaching new clients and retaining them shouldn't be that much of a problem. After all, they need your services to keep everything in order. Though that’s partially true, even in the accounting space, the competition is high, and you need to cut through the noise and get in front of your dream customers to succeed. Funnily enough, Tyler Clark believes accounting firms can do just that with the help of a well-established sales and marketing strategy.

Tyler Clark is the Co-Founder of DreamFirms, a company that works with entrepreneurial accountants to build the accounting firms of their dreams. After working with thousands of accountants, Tyler knows what works and what doesn’t in today's fast-paced digital age. Before DreamFirms, Tyler was the Co-Founder of America’s Choice Bookkeeping, and Tax and Digital Marketing Strategist at New Clients Incorporated.

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Welcome back to CFO weekly, where we're talking with financial leaders about how to build efficiency in their teams, create time for strategy, and ultimately get results, with your host Megan Weis. Let's jump right in.

Megan: Today my guest is Tyler S. Clark. Tyler is the co-founder of Dream Firms, where he and his team work with entrepreneurial accountants to create the accounting firm of their dreams through a dynamic coaching program combined with a done-for-you system implementation. Tyler, thank you very much for joining me on today's episode.

Tyler: It's an absolute pleasure, Megan. Thank you so much for having me.

Megan: Today we'll be learning about you and your journey, of course, but we're also going to hear how accounting firms should be leveraging sales and marketing tools to create generational wealth and impact and some advice on how to do just that. I'm really looking forward to learning from you so let's get started. As always, let's start with you and your journey and how it is you got to where you are today.

Tyler: This is a little bit of a strange journey. I like to make a joke that is 100% true that there's never been a moment in my life where sales and marketing specifically for entrepreneurial accountants have not been a part of it. To give some context to that, my grandfather was a very, very dynamic man. He served proudly in World War Two. He grew up during the Great Depression selling soap door to door to be able to feed himself. Then once he emerged from the military and started a family, he also launched an accounting firm in South Jersey known as Garden State Accounting.

He built up what would be by today's standards about an eight-figure firm, nearly the $10 million market. Not a million-dollar-plus firm at the time. That growth was somewhat unheard of for such a small business. The way he was able to achieve that is he used my father as his dedicated sales and marketing representative, which was also unheard of for an accounting firm to have a dedicated marketing director effectively to go out and sign up small medium-sized businesses.

Another thing that he also pioneered and is really, of course, widespread now is the use of packages and monthly fixed pricing. The reason that these techniques are so common today is that after my father left my grandfather's firm, and started his own firm, he then launched a consulting firm, and it was the first-ever marketing and sales-specific consulting firm for accounting professionals known as New Clients Incorporated, served over several thousands of firms nationwide for over 30 years.

My father took those techniques and popularized them with a small to the medium-sized accounting firm and that business was started right when I was born. That's a long way of saying this is kind of running in my DNA. I joined my father coming out of college and studied under his tutelage for five years as a growth consultant. Then ultimately launched my own firm once I realized that there was this crazy thing called the internet that was really upending cold calling and attending B&I. I said, "There's got to be something to this."

We started our own firm and the next generation. I know I'm the sales rep for my father. I added six figures of new non-referral growth to each year, primarily with digital marketing, and used that as a breeding ground for new ideas that we still use and ultimately expand upon with our clientele today through Dream Firms.

Megan: That's an amazing story. Some people out there might think that you were handed this career on a silver platter, and did you ever really have to work hard to get good at it? What would you tell them?

Tyler: [laughs] I'd say wealth unearned is unappreciated. I would say that my grandfather was hard on my father. My father was generous with me. I think that there are a lot of opportunities that we have in life and I certainly have been given more than I would say a lot of other people have, but an opportunity without the willingness to do something with it is meaningless.

While I certainly have had my fair share of struggles, ultimately it's perseverance and that's something my father taught me from a very early age with martial arts and self-discipline. I would say to those people that it's easy to say those types of things, but ultimately you got to work hard to be able to make a meaningful living. That's something that we've been able to do and more importantly, help our clients to do as well.

Megan: Let's talk about Dream Firms. What exactly is it that you do?

Tyler: Dream Firms is really a marketing consulting agency, but we've got a bit of a different spin on it. We realized that there was a problem with today's entrepreneurial accountant. They were constantly buying access to courses. If you've ever purchased a course before, the problem with this is that it's very easy to buy access and say, "I'll get to it tomorrow." It's also very easy to then assign self-guilt and say, "Well, it's my fault because I didn't go through all the material, or I didn't implement it the right way."

We realize that this is not the optimal way to service our dream client. That's really what we care about, is helping the right client with the right solutions. What we said is, what if we didn't just do courses? What if we didn't just do coaching? What if we didn't just do lead-gen? What if we were able to combine the community, the coaching, the cutting-edge training, and provide services that allowed our clients to speak consistently with their prospective dream clients? What we do is a combination of coaching, software implementation, and done-for-you-lead-gen combined with cutting-edge training materials.

Megan: Who's your ideal client?

Tyler: Micro full-service accounting firm. The way I define that further is, you don't have to offer every single service under the sun when I say micro full service, but you got to offer that package that is desirable to that small to medium-sized business owner so that you can get to that monthly recurring revenue and ultimately claim more of the market share, excuse me, wallet share that is available from that prospective business owner.

If you just offer bookkeeping and you don't find a way to offer taxes.

Not saying you have to do the taxes, but offer it, get paid for it, and then find a way to have it be delivered to the client at a high-quality level. Well, they're going to go buy that service somewhere. We want to work with clients that are smart enough to understand that, again, they're going to spend this money, they may as well spend it with you. We typically find the sweet spot to be below the $2 million revenue range.

I really love the early, even startup to a low six figures. That tends to be our real sweet spot. The reason for that is, they don't have tremendously bad habits quite yet. They're not entrenched, they're not complacent. They're really excited to grow and change and learn. That to me is the definition of a dream client who wants more of the wallet share, knows it's possible to get it, and is willing to put in the work to do it.

Megan: The goal is for your clients to move up the value chain for their clients.

Tyler: That's right on the money. Exactly.

Megan: Talk to us about your proudest achievements since founding Dream Firms.

Tyler: Wow. I have a few. I'll keep this short. One of the most visceral memories that I have is we had an event recently. It was our first-ever in-person event. The company is based out of the US, but I live in France with my wife who is French. When we planned this event post-COVID, I wasn't sure anybody was going to come, to be totally honest. You never really know when you plan events what turnout is going to be like, especially when you factor in crossing the Atlantic Ocean, and when you factor in a post-pandemic environment. Some people can disagree with me on that.

Travel restrictions were much lighter and easier, and people felt comfortable making the trip. We had eight firms fly out and spent five days with us. Just seeing France, masterminding with us, having huge breakthroughs. It was just so amazing to build those interpersonal relationships when we had just been digital for so long with just Zoom meetings. That was an amazing accomplishment. I loved that a lot. I just thought that that was so cool.

Another one is more on the client side as opposed to how it made us feel. We have an award that is known as our 100k Club/ Dream Firm award. A lot of one of the pieces of research that we've conducted, because when you join our Facebook group, The Proactive Accountants, we ask what is your growth goal in the next 12 months. What we found is over 90 plus percent of the people joining this group, had a figure right in the ballpark of about $100,000 in the next 12 months. What we also realize is that the vast majority of people never reach this goal. They set it, they set it, they set it, and they rarely reach it.

We created this award to symbolize the people who did what it takes to be able to reach a milestone that many people set, and few are able to do so and we've given out, I don't know, I want to say close to 30 plus awards since we created it and started tracking it. It's pretty humbling to know that we've had that level of success for our clients in such a relatively short timeframe since creating and starting to administer that award. Those are two milestones or achievements that I'm super proud of.

Megan: That's awesome. What do you think is the difference between those who achieve that milestone of $100,000 versus those that don't?

Tyler: There's an old saying, or maybe it's a little bit more new age, but I largely agree with it and it's "mindset is everything". There's something to be said about the people who believe it's possible and there's another old quote I like from Jim Rohn, which is "whether you believe you can or you can't, you're right". I think when everyone puts that goal down, they say "I can do this". There's a difference between setting a goal down and actually establishing the plan.

To my point earlier, having the self-discipline to follow through on that plan. Not everything you do is going to be super engaging or exciting. It's going to feel a little weird. It's going to maybe take a little while to get used to the idea of some of the marketing tactics or some of the sales strategies. It's a skill, and once you learn and develop the skill, and you have that mindset that once I learn and have the skill, I'll have it for the rest of my life, and you start to stack those skills on top of each other.

You just don't stay complacent and you have the mindset that, "I can learn how to sell effectively. I can learn to sell at a higher price point. I can learn how to build these digital marketing systems that ultimately get me displayed as an expert so that people are willing to pay a higher price than they would to your standard commoditized accounting firm."

Once they have that first major breakthrough, I find that it's the first domino and everything else gets so much easier after that. That, to me is the main difference maker. If you believe you can do it, you're much closer already, and then if you have the corresponding plan and the support of your peers and some industry experts, you're going to move a lot faster than you originally thought was possible.

Megan: Talk to me about how marketing has changed over time, and why traditional marketing methods are just no longer as effective for accountants.

Tyler: I won't say that they're not as effective. I'll just say that there's more competition for everyone's interest and attention. There's a statistic that's mind-blowing, which is the average American sees over 5,000 ads a day. When people hear that they go, "That can't be," but it's true. You can look up the study. You can validate it yourself. When you start to hear something like that, it becomes more important to understand what works for you and reverse engineering it. Think about how many emails you get, the ones you open.

Think about how many links are in all those emails, the links, you click through. Think about how many pieces of direct mail you get, how many of them go in the trash, and how many of them actually sit on your kitchen table for at least a few weeks, maybe before you decide to make that call.

I like to be clear that marketing really hasn't changed that much over time. It's just the way in which we can communicate with other people that has changed and so it's always going to come down to timing, and how relevant you are. If you've got a really relevant message and you get there at the right time when they're in that moment of pain, you're giving yourself a really great chance of being able to be the solution to alleviating that pain. But if you're never there, if you're never attempting to communicate in any capacity, you're really not giving yourself a chance to secure business.

I don't think that there's, again, that much difference. It's just the mediums themselves have changed, but the marketing itself is pretty much the same.

Megan: Let's talk about timing because that seems like more luck than anything else. How can you improve that for yourself?

Tyler: Great. I love this question because I get it all the time. It's not luck. It's just being consistent. What I mean by that is, when you are consistent with your marketing, you're not doing things that require you to do them over and over and over again. That is luck when you're saying, "I'm gonna take my time and I personally am going to spend an hour a day marketing." It's like, okay. You have fewer chances overall, it's not luck. It's just fewer chances, but when you have one person on a part-time basis for four hours helping you with marketing, and making sure that your message of why your services are important is getting in front of the right people at the right potential time, you're exponential. You're four times more likely at that point. I don't consider it as much luck as much as it is, what are the systems that you have in place that can create the result without your direct time? The more that you can focus on that as the end result, the higher chances you will have of success.

There are, of course, things you can tweak in terms of your messaging, targeting, and list. Marketing is simple. You get a list, you get a great message, and you got to make sure you get in front of them.

Megan: Is it basically automating to stay in front of your audience?

Tyler: Automation certainly plays a part in system building. There's a principle that I love to discuss when automation comes up and I refer to it as the DDAD principle. It's really D, which means delete, in other words, there are a lot of things you shouldn't be doing that you can just get out of your brain by just saying, "I don't need to be doing this." This is again about time. Then there's Do it, which is if it takes two minutes or less, just do it. Like some people will open an email, and mark it as unread to come back to it, even though it would take them 30 seconds to respond to it, so just do it.

The third part of this is Automate. Anything that can be automated should be automated and so I really like that principle, but it also loses the human element very quickly. I think we've all had that experience on social media of getting messages from robots and even if you respond, then the robot responds with something else and it's like they're not even responding-- they're not even attempting to have the conversation with me. That's where automation really loses its impact from a marketing perspective. The final D in the DDAD equation here is delegation.

There should be a healthy blend of automation and delegation so that you can make sure that you still have the personalized touch that accounts for a unique situation, but you can still use automation for the bulk communications like your email. That's very easy to automate in terms of your broadcast message into your unconverted buyers, into your existing clients, if necessary, for ascension to get them into a higher package.

There are a lot of ways to go about it but I look at it as the two main things you've got to just understand the division of labor between are what are you delegating? What are you automating? What's the trade-off of automating something that could or should otherwise be delegated at a higher cost?

Megan: Let's talk about social media. What does good content look like in the world of accounting?

Tyler: Oh, wow. All good content looks exactly the same. All good content is authentic. The problem that I see with websites, social media, I'll just say online marketing in general in the accounting space, is it's very cookie cutter. You pick your template, you get your four posts a week or a month, and they look just like every other person who signed up for that exact same service. There's no authenticity to it because the firm owner cannot possibly be bothered for 10 to 15 minutes a week to produce something that is real, organic, and meaningful.

To me, the way that you cut through the noise, is you have to invest an incredibly small amount of time in order to make sure that your message is being heard by the face of the firm, the owner. This is why again, I emphasize the micro full-service aspect for our dream client because they need to be the face of their firm. They need to be willing to take a little bit of time to share their message, to build those bonds. What we see is as soon as someone is willing to do that, the results are it's a multiplicative effect across all of their marketing systems because they have that authenticity that is completely lacking and void in the rest of the market.

Megan: Maybe you just answered it, but what advice do you have for those listeners who are wanting to try social media marketing for the first time? Maybe it's an area they've not tried before.

Tyler: Absolutely. The way I want people to think about social media marketing is it's really the current state of the internet. I heard that from Gary Vaynerchuk. I'm not a huge fan of him, but I thought that was a particularly astute point. It's where the vast majority of people are investing the vast majority amount of time online. When you hear that and you go, "I want efficient marketing." I want to be efficient with my time and my dollars. You can't ignore something that's as important as a statement like that and is backed up by all sorts of crazy statistics. When you're saying, "I need to get started." Almost everyone has social media. If you don't, pick the platform that you think you will be the most likely to be a somewhat consistent user on. LinkedIn's very easy. Facebook is very easy.

That's going to be where you're going to find probably the most success, depending on your dream client profile, and just dedicate 10 to 15 minutes a week to video. I know when I say video, that's when people freeze up, and I froze up the first time someone suggested it to me because I didn't develop the skill yet. That was what I said about the difference between people who reach a tremendous milestone and those who don't. They have the mindset, "I can do this, this is worth doing, I'll develop the skill." 10 to 15 minutes a week will set you apart from everybody because there are so few accountants that produce content on social media.

Facebook's the easiest one to go live with. You just go live, you say hello, and you give them a quick tip or two on ultimately your value proposition or a tax law change. All of a sudden you start the ball rolling and you don't need to worry about how many people see me, or how much engagement I get. You're exclusively focused on developing the skill. As you develop the skill, more people will start to pay attention and you'll want to do more with this type of marketing because you're going to see tangible results from it in a shockingly short period of time.

Megan: That's great advice. I'm sure most accountants do freeze up when they think about the video because I think a lot of us are introverted by nature. That seems like really putting yourself out there.

Tyler: Absolutely. People don't believe me when I say this, but I am painfully introverted. I love these types of conversations, one on one conversations. I like talking to a camera because I'm not talking to a room full of people that I don't know, right? If anything, it was perfectly built for the introvert and so just changing the way we think about this a little bit, again, it has profound ramifications on the future of your business but if you just go, "Hey, I'm an introvert, I can't do this." You're right, you can't. But if you say, "Hey, I can find a way to do this, and maybe this is actually the ideal scenario for an introvert." Congratulations, you're one step closer.

Megan: You've worked with thousands of accountants totaling hundreds of millions of dollars of new revenue. What's the most important thing that accountants should start doing right now?

Tyler: Oh man. This is very easy. Stop trying to serve and please everyone. The average accountant does way too much work for way too little money. The reason that this happens is, well, it's twofold. The first part is it's very easy in the service space to want to do more. The whole reason we're in the service space is to help people. I want to help you, but you have to set hard limits on when and in what situations that help is accessible because if you don't, you'll find yourself creating a lot more-- what's the term here?

It's not necessarily stressing, but a lot more friction between you and your clients because you don't feel like you're getting paid what you want but it's actually a self-fulfilling prophecy or self-fulfilling problem because you are the one that keeps overstepping the boundaries that you never set in the first place.

That is the first part of that answer. But the second part is the way that you are allowed, or the path forward to getting paid more is you have to limit not only the scope of services but limit who you work with. This is the biggest problem. You try to say, "I work with small businesses" or "I want to work with people who respect what I do." This is so common. When do I say who's your dream client? "Small businesses. Rich people." I'm just like, we got to be more specific. We have to be extremely clear with who that is. Are you trying to work with a niche, when you say niche, all of a sudden your depth of expertise in that space expands infinitely?

People become more curious about what this accountant knows who's specific to, I'll just pick one at random, construction. What do they know that my general accounting firm does not know about construction? Because it seems like they make mistakes or it seems like they don't communicate that often, or it seems like they don't really understand the cash flow problems that come along with my business and being able to pay my guys on time. They don't really seem to get it, so maybe they do.

By creating that separation between you and the rest of the marketplace, by strategically picking who you want to work with and what you want to deliver, you are going to be able to have a much, much more profitable journey from client acquisition to fulfillment, because you won't have as many different types of problems to deal with and ultimately it'll make the back-end profitable and as well as making the front-end significantly more efficient.

Megan: That's really interesting because I think as accountants, we think accounting goes across all industries, so the more industries we can serve, the more potential clients we have. Your recommendation is actually to specialize in an area.

Tyler: It's the same thing that I say when people contact us and I go, "Why are we on the phone? Why are we talking to one another?" It's because I am a specialist. There are marketers. I could teach marketing and sales to just about anyone because it is fundamentally the same, but there are nuances to each space and people like to feel special. What I want to impart to my clients is that I'm here for you. I know way more about this than all the other generalists out there combined because it's all I do. If you take that same value proposition and you reapply it back to your firm, you'll experience tremendous growth. I see it time and time again.

Megan: You've mentioned a dream client. What does that look like for an accountant?

Tyler: That is entirely up to the firm owner. I like to say I'm not here to fit you into a box, as long as they meet the golden rule, which is profitability and you have the ability to not bottleneck yourself and you can hire the help you need to continue to elevate inside of your own firm. It can be anyone. It could be that high-level advisory client. That outsource CFO opportunity. I have clients, their dream clients are literally simple 1040s. They want as many 1040s as they can get their hands on, and that's great. That's wonderful. We all shouldn't have the same dream client profile, but we all abide by the same principle which is you have to love to work with them. They have to be willing to pay you the price that you are asking for. Those are pretty much it.

Megan: Talk me through your approach to systemizing how accountants attract and win the business of their dream clients. What are the key components of these systems?

Tyler: First one we've covered already, is just narrow scope. We've got to make sure that we get more clear on who we're looking to target. The second part is, once we know who, we've got to go deeper into what their pain points are, what their struggles are, and what the industry language is that they use. Once we understand those aspects, then we can actually create some meaningful messages. Whether it's the copy on your website, whether it's what you're putting out on social media, whether it's your free eBooks or downloads.

It's the message that we have to craft, but it has to speak to that person. We got to know them intently. Then once we have the messaging, once we have the assets, and the way I phrase this to our clients is we've got to get you to shine online. The truth is, is that you're an expert, but your expert status is not being seen or displayed the way it needs to in the most commonly used medium for business, the internet. When you shine online, the next part is making sure that the right people see you.

Then we're going out and we're strategically targeting typically through a combination of different social media platforms. I talked about them a little bit earlier but it's always specific to the dream client profile. Then we're making sure that you're getting in front of them and we're saying hello, and we're ultimately making sure that you're aware that they're aware of your expertise.

It's pretty amazing because when we run our lead gen systems, we average four booked appointments per week for our clients and that's during the slow season. We're having this conversation right at the end of Q3 so if things heat up in Q4, I'm expecting that number to be significantly better than that. That's already close to 5 to 10X what the average accounting firm sees in the same time period. The market's hungry for this. They're excited to have niche-specific experts, especially in the financial realm, and the accounting realm, on their side. You got to know who you're targeting, know what they care about, look the part, and get in front of them.

Megan: How do you shine online? How do you make a website or some sort of online presence that differentiates you?

Tyler: I love this question. You're a fantastic interviewer, Megan. I talked earlier about the 5,000 ads you see and what you find yourself saying yes to. Why are you saying yes to those things? This is a similar approach that I had when I was running my firm, I was with them, I call them CPA site solutions, right? So-called a leader in websites for accounting professionals. I just looked at our accounting firm website with a fresh set of eyes and I said, "If was my dream prospective client," which I had recently defined, and I saw this, I said, would I be motivated? Would I be excited? Would I understand our expertise?

Would I know even what the next step is? Would I be enticed to take that next step? I just sat there and I said, "Well, what are the websites that I have gone to and have actually been enticed to move forward with?" What were the elements that went into that? Then I just deconstructed that process and I rebuilt the site what was crazy is that we only had one lead in one year from the CPA site. Just one. Then I switched the website over with all of the changes that I just described to you.

I just looked at it, and said, "What do I need?" I got to make sure I speak specifically to someone. I got to make sure I have some degree of video. I got to make sure that I've got testimonials that shine. I got to make sure they know exactly what to do and why it's a benefit that they schedule their call with us. Then we got six leads in 30 days. It like blew my mind. It was such a mind-altering shift and I was like, "This is possible." People are out there looking and searching and we're showing up.

Not only are we showing up, but they're also actually taking the action I need them to, to move them into a sales dialogue with our firm. Shine online to me is, again, it's just you tape the message, you deconstruct what you know has worked well, and we of course already know what that is. I just basically described all the primary components, and you make sure that it is a consistent image across all of your digital presences. You don't want to have that Twitter account that you signed up for because everyone said you needed a Twitter account in 2012 and you've never tweeted on it.

I'd rather you delete it or at least update it and make sure it stays up to date. Shining online is not complicated. It's more of just having a consistent message and one that ultimately you're proud of, and make sure that it is throughout the internet on all the places that you can control access to.

Megan: If the audience takes just one thing away from this conversation, what would you want it to be?

Tyler: You are significantly undervaluing and underappreciating your time. In order for you to be able to the progress that you deserve, not want, you deserve. You have to gain way more control over your time. Stop taking random inbound calls from clients. Stop responding to text messages. Block out a minimum of two to three hours per day to work on your firm and not in it. Build systems that free up your time because it's the only way to make the progress that you need to see.

Megan: That's great advice. I have one more question for you, and I'm just curious, so how is it that you stay one step ahead and at the top of your game?

Tyler: My wife. [laughs] That's an easy one.

Megan: That's a great answer.

Tyler: We're a team. Ironically, we just had a call earlier today with our accounting firm and we actually believe in the value proposition of an accounting firm, as crazy as that sounds so we're excited to talk to our accountant. What was fascinating is when he hopped onto the call, he goes like, I get why you guys work so well." We were just like, what do you mean? He goes, "Maureen's on top of everything. She's the backend ops. She has eyes on all of it, and Tyler, you are the front end." I was like, "Yes, that's why it works." Maureen, my beautiful wife, definitely gives me a ton of motivation, but she's the most driven person I've ever had the pleasure of knowing. She's what really keeps just one step ahead.

Megan: Wow, that's awesome. Sounds like you guys are great partners.

Tyler: For sure. Absolutely.

Megan: Tyler, thank you so much for being my guest today.

Tyler: I could not thank you enough for the opportunity and I'm really looking forward to interviewing you inside the Proactive Accountants Facebook group not so long from now.

Megan: I need to sign up for that. I really enjoyed speaking with you and hearing about your experiences and all of the resulting insights. I wish you and Dream Firms and your clients all the best. To all of our listeners, please tune in next week, and until then, take care.

If you're ready to boost efficiency and streamline your accounting processes at significant cost savings, it's time to talk with Personiv. Their people-powered solutions have transformed the delivery of back-office tasks and general accounting functions for decades. Partnering with clients to provide everything from accounts payable to payroll services. See what Personiv can do for you by visiting personiv.com.

You've been listening to CFO Weekly presented by Personiv. Please subscribe wherever you get your podcast to hear all of our episodes. Want to learn more? Check out personiv.com. Thanks for listening.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • The first-ever marketing and sales consulting firm for accounting professionals

  • How DreamFirms help accounting firms build their dream businesses

  • Traditional versus modern marketing methods

  • How to ensure the timing is right for your marketing strategy

  • What good content looks like in the accounting space

Key Takeaways

Accounting Pioneers

Accounting pioneers quote

Tyler’s passion for marketing, sales, and accounting was inspired by his family. After military service, his grandpa built an eight-figure accounting firm which at the time was unheard of for such a small business. He achieved that by employing Tyler's father as his dedicated sales and marketing representative, when it was also rare for an accounting firm to have a dedicated marketing director. Another thing he pioneered back then was the use of packages and monthly fixed pricing. Eventually, Tyler's father opened the first-ever marketing and sales consulting firm for accounting professionals. Tyler joined his father after college, studied under his tutelage for five years as a growth consultant, and then ultimately launched his firm.

“There's never been a moment in my life where sales and marketing, specifically for entrepreneurial accountants, has not been a part of it,” Clark said. - 01:09 - 04:04

Building Your Accounting Dream Business

Quote Tyler Clark is the Co-Founder of DreamFirms

DreamFirms is a marketing consulting agency that offers micro full-service accounting firms a combination of coaching, software implementation, and lead gen combined with cutting-edge training materials, which allows firms to speak to their dream clients in a consistent voice.

“What we care about is helping the right client with the right solutions,” Clark said. - 05:08 - 08:12

The Winner Mindset

Quote winner mindset for marketing in accounting firms

The difference between accounting firms that achieve the milestone of a hundred thousand dollars versus those that don't starts with the right mindset. A few of his rules: You have to establish a plan and have the self-discipline to follow through. Not everything you do will be engaging or exciting. It might feel weird at first to use marketing and sales tactics, but you have to develop those skills. Once you get past this first breakthrough, everything else gets much easier.

“If you believe you can do it, you're much closer already. And then if you have the corresponding plan and the support of your peers and some industry experts, you will move faster than you originally thought was possible,” Clark said. - 10:55 - 12:45

Traditional Versus Modern Marketing Methods for Accounting Firms

Quote traditional vs modern marketing in accounting firms

Though marketing methods haven't changed much over time, there's more competition for everyone's interest and attention. So it's crucial to have a relevant message and get to your customers at the right time. When they are in that moment of pain, you give yourself a great chance to alleviate it.

“Marketing hasn't changed that much over time. It's just how we can communicate with other people that has changed,” Clark said. - 12:45 - 14:26

How to Ensure the Right Timing

Quote right content marketing timing

Timing is an essential part of winning at marketing. To ensure the right timing, you have to be consistent with your marketing strategy and set up the most suitable systems to create a positive result. The more you can focus on that as the end result, the higher your chances of success are.

“Marketing is simple. You get a list, you get a great message, and you have to make sure you get in front of them,” Clark said. - 14:26 - 17:49

What Does Good Content Marketing Look Like in the Accounting Space?

Quote good content marketing in the accounting space

Regardless of the industry, good content should be authentic and meaningful. However, many businesses overlook this fact. To cut through the noise, ensure that your message is being communicated from top to bottom in your company. To get started with social media, find the most convenient channels to focus on depending on your dream client profile, and dedicate ten to fifteen minutes a week to posting a video or going live.

“All good content looks exactly the same. All good content is authentic,” Clark said. - 17:49 - 21:38

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